Road accidents and crashes have become a major problem in the Lebanese society. Annual reports reveal that many people of all ages have been killed or injured. This has incurred tremendous problems on the families and society.
The Road Safety Club at Saint Joseph School is a unique club that serves to help and improve our community. This year we, a group of 27 1st secondary students, were leading this project and we were accompanied by a teacher in our meetings. After our brainstorming meeting, we tackled various problems that are present in our community. Moreover, we discussed the problem that we encounter in our daily life; texting and driving. The aim of our project was to make people aware of the road safety measures that should be followed while driving (mainly not texting while driving ).To help us with our research, we met with the founder of "Kun Hadi" NGO who informed us about the tragic accident that was the demise of his son "Hadi". He taught us about road signs and about the driving rules. He insisted on respecting these rules in order to avoid accidents. In addition, we met with the Red Cross who taught us how to deal with wounded people on the scene of an accident while waiting for the ambulance to arrive. They also provided us with some statistics about accidents caused by texting and driving.
After our contact with "Kun Hadi" and the Red Cross that helped us to organize an awareness day, we defined the suitable steps for our action as follows:
1. Contact different malls to implement our campaign
2. Prepare a Mega Food Sale to fund our event
3. Create a Facebook page to help boost our event and our hashtag #DontTextAndDrive
We contacted the City Mall administration to have permission to conduct our campaign in the mall, but our request was rejected. Finally, we contacted the "Storiom Saliba" Mall Administration, a huge mall that many people visit every day, who gave us permission to hold our campaign on April 6, 2019. Furthermore, to fund our awareness day a "Mega Food Sale" was held in our school where homemade food was sold. The money raised was used to buy the materials for our awareness long day.
On April 6, we ask people to fill our survey:
-Do you usually text and drive?
-Have you ever received a fine due to texting while driving?
-Do you usually use the ‘Do Not Disturb’ option on your smartphone?
Later we asked them, to join us on our stand, where we had prepared a game that consists folding the person’s eyes and asking them to walk at a certain speed in a straight line. At his/her arrival, the person would realize he/she deviated from the track. The aim of our small game proves that texting while driving is like being blindfolded, the person will be distracted and won’t be focused on the road thus will not drive within the lines, which leads to several accidents. At the end of the track, participants were asked to fill out another survey that we had prepared. The survey included questions to judge whether the candidates were convinced about the danger of texting and driving.
-Are you more aware of the dangers of texting and driving?
-Do you still consider using your phone while driving?
We also had a small Photo Booth where we will put a car and people will take pictures in it.
This design was printed on the foam board along with the project’s title #DontTextAndDrive. We used these pictures to post them on our school’s Facebook page. The hashtag was trending and more people are now convinced about the danger of texting while driving, especially our young drivers.
It was a successful experience!!!!!!!!!